How social media can make a positive difference

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On November 12, the University of Tennessee football program fired coach Butch Jones. He hadn’t won a single SEC conference game all season and it was time to part ways. In the opinion of many, this firing took way too long. However, with this fire, the Tennessee community became excited again. There was a prospect of success again with the thought of bringing in a coach who could resurrect a winning team.

This past weekend, the time had arrived. It was time to announce the new coaching pick for the Tennessee Volunteers football team. As ESPN announced that the guy was Greg Schiano, Vol nation took to social media to air their frustrations. In addition, students and fans in Knoxville showed up at the stadium to protest the hire. Greg Schiano is only a mediocre coach at best when it comes to football. When it comes to not-football related things, there is a lot of grey area. Greg Schiano worked under the notorious Penn State football coach, Jerry Sandusky, who was found guilty of molesting many young boys. According to a court testimony in 2016, Greg Schiano knew about the molestations. This seems like a very murky area and definitely an area that we may never know the whole truth about.  

In response to the announcement that Greg Schiano would be the new coach, there was an uproar from the fans. Fans took to all social media outlets to voice concerns. Greg Schiano was trending on twitter Sunday afternoon/evening. This particular situation leads us to the realization that we are in a unique time. If this had happened ten or so years ago, fans would not have been able to have this drastic of an impact. Social media gives us a very unique opportunity to be able to reach out to pretty much anyone. It will be extremely interesting to see where social media takes us in the future. I can’t imagine being any more connected than we already are, but I feel confident in my assumption that our society will be even more connected in the years to come.

This situation has (hopefully) taught many people a valuable lesson: with enough concerned people, we can make a difference! And, a huge difference at that!